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The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

Belarus coup plot foiled in Moscow

by New Worker correspondent

AN AMERICAN plot to overthrow the Belarusian government has been foiled by Russian and Belarusian intelligence. Two of the Belarusian ring-leaders have been arrested in Moscow by Russian security forces – journalist Alexander Feduta and lawyer Yuri Zenkovich, who also has US citizenship – for plotting to kill President Alexander Lukashenko and overthrow the elected government of Belarus. Another agent of imperialism, Grigory Kostusev, who leads the Belarusian ‘Popular Front’ opposition party, was detained by local police in his hometown in Belarus.

Last week the Belarusian security services, the KGB, announced that they had broken up an “organised group” of terrorists who were planning the “physical elimination of the president and his family” and “the organisation of an armed rebellion in order to take power by violent means”.

The news has been confirmed by the Russians, who say the Belarusian traitors were unmasked some time ago in a joint operation by Russian and Belarusian intelligence. They videoed the US agents’ supposedly secret meetings and intercepted their Zoom video conferences until they had enough evidence to round them up.

Belarusian TV has now broadcast hidden camera footage of a meeting between Feduta, Zenkovich and three “Belarusian army generals” in a restaurant on Moscow’s Garden Ring road to discuss a detailed plan of the coup.

The plan discussed at the meeting involved killing “almost the entire leadership” of Belarus, a military coup and a power blackout of the entire country. They said Lukashenko needs to be “disposed of” and at least 30 in Minsk – presumably top officials – had to be “interned literally within the first hour”.

Clips of Zoom meetings have also been shown. In one of them, Feduta talks about the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in 1981 as an event that led to a “successful rotation” of national leadership. In another, Zenkovich imagines telling someone “let us now finish off Luka and decide who will rule Belarus later” at the ballot box. In yet another segment, the pair discussed how to ensure the loyalty of officials after a coup by threatening dissenters with prosecution.

President Lukashenko has told the Belarusian media: “We detained the group. They showed us how they had planned everything, I remained silent. Then we discovered the work of clearly foreign intelligence services, most likely the FBI or the CIA.” They apparently chose Moscow as their centre because there is an open border between Belarus and Russia and the Belarusian traitors wanted a location that could not be traced back to a NATO country.

The Belarusian leader also told journalists that he clearly believes the order to kill him could only have come from President Biden himself and that he had raised the issue with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.

In the Kremlin, Putin’s response was measured. His office confirmed that the Russian president had, indeed, spoken to Lukashenko on the phone and that he had subsequently called Joe Biden in the White House. But Putin said Russia will find “asymmetrical” ways to defend its national interests if other nations refuse dialogue.

“Unfriendly actions toward Russia do not cease,” Putin said, speaking during his annual address to both houses of Russia’s parliament on Wednesday. “In these circumstances, we behave ourselves with utter restraint, one may even say humbly, often times leaving without response not only unfriendly actions but also blatant rudeness…one can evaluate [former] President of Ukraine Yanukovych or Maduro of Venezuela however one can have any point of view regarding the policies of Belarusian President Alexander Grigoryevich Lukashenko. But the practice of organising coups and attempts to organise assassinations of heads of state is just too much. All boundaries have been crossed.”